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tv   News 4 This Week  NBC  November 13, 2011 5:30am-6:00am EST

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others may have made you sink back in history. this is a look at some of the local stories making news this week. is d.c. firefighter nearly loses his life in a fire that was intentionally set. months later, he returned to work with a healing body and strong spirit. metro does something unusual. why this woman convinced them to stop the escalator that wasn't broken. how a tributte to healing takes a spot in bethesda. first, we start with a special homecoming. more than 175 soldiers received a hero's welcome as they come home from a three-month stand in afghanistan. they touched down at joint base andrews to a very emotional reunion. megan mcgrath was there. >> reporter: hugs, tears of joy and relief and plenty of kisses.
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after 85 days in afghanistan, electronic attack squadron vaq-209 arrived. this isn't just a homecoming. it's one of the most important days of his life. his wife, jessica, gave birth while he was overseas. this is the first time he has met his little baby. >> amazing. looking forward to it. as soon as i landed, the first thing i wanted to do was grab him and kiss him. i got to see him through skype. it's not the same thing. >> i'm really happy. it's emotional for me. and for him. >> reporter: being in a war zone far away from loved ones is never easy. it's a sacrifice these families willingly make. the mission is successful. everyone is home safe. here in the hangar, there are
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nothing but smiles. >> it's difficult with the baby. other than that, you do what you gotta do. >> i'm happy to be home. >> reporter: megan mcgrath, news 4. a couple heroes received a special honor on capitol hill. a tribute to war heroes on both ends of the leash. they focus on the work of service dogs. one canine served a tour in iraq along with servicemen and women. the other helped their owner escape on september 11th. >> did you know there were some 2300 military dogs in service today? they take many of the same risks and put their lives on the line. they sniff out. they comfort our soldiers on the battlefield and veterans at home. >> it was sponsored by the american humane association. he nearly lost his life,
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butner lost his spirit. a d.c. firefighter returned to work seven months after being severely burned fighting a house wire. tracee wilkins was at the firehouse for his fist day back at work. >> reporter: it's chuck ryan's first call in 212 days. he says he's ready for what the day may bring. have to do another search and possible rescue. how do you think you are going to feel at that moment? >> no different. i mean, it's just you thought it before. sometimes, you know, people get injured. you don't want to. i'm thankful i'm able to come back to work. my injuries weren't career ending. >> reporter: the injuries covered 40% of his body. he had second and third degree burns that caused him to lose four of his fingers. it started at this house fire in
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north d.c. in april. he was one of five firefighters injured when they ran into the burning home to see if anyone was trapped. the house was empty. his burns were the most extensive. after 49 days in the hospital and a number of surgeries and months of therapy, he's back to work today. >> how are you feeling? >> i feel great. i do. hopefully, this will be the next part, you know, to move on past the injuries. i just want to keep moving forward. >> reporter: he said he's thinking of other strangers he has yet to meet and save. >> i keep on looking for tomorrow, not what happened yesterday. >> reporter: he says he still has some physical therapy the doctors want him to do. in southeast, i'm tracee wilkins, news 4. >> he feels great and looks great. way to go, ryan. have you heard, d.c. could
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become the 51st state. there's a new website that's been launched to help get the word out. we have more. >> reporter: some 600,000 people live in our nation's capital, generating more than $3 billion in federal income taxes. the fight for statehood and representation in congress is decades and some say centuries old. at city hall, d.c. leaders launched a new website to promote the effort. they have a lot of information. there's history, facts and a petition. congresswoman eleanor holmes norton reintroduced the first bill she brought forward after being elected to congress. the last one had majority of support. leaders believe the new website is the next step in branding the
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efforts while standing up for equal rights. in northwest, elaine reyes, news 4. >> it might help d.c. residents and government. have you passed through the international airport yet? there's changes. they are beginning a $100 million renovation project. there will be more security check points and moving sidewalks added. there's going to be a new food and retail space put in there. the project is expected to be completed in summer, 2013. it's dpoung to be awhile. a capitol hill gathering spot is back in business after nearly being destroyed by fire. tune in is the name of the place. they are serving neighbors on the hill for more than 60 years. tom sherwood reports, the loyal patrons say it seems everything is finally right with the world.
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>> reporter: on pennsylvania avenue, the balloons were the first indication tune in was back in business. they have a new bar and bar stools and a new kitchen. the same old feel that existed before a kitchen fire gutted the place. local businesses and people raised $40,000 to keep the staff paid while the restaurant was repaired. >> it's been wonderful. it's been wonderful. familiar faces coming back in. so happy to see them. >> reporter: she runs the restaurant her father opened in the 1940s. long-time customers were back for the comfort food. >> i have to order something greasy like fries or a cheese burger. it's a place that is here on christmas day when you don't have any place to go. >> i am a lawyer and eating a
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hamburger. it's delicious. >> reporter: glad to be back for a favorite hamburger. >> brings back the community to the hill. the neighborhood bar. this place operates as a post office, a meeting spot. it's just part of the fabric of the neighborhood. >> reporter: if all goes well, the little tune in will be a stopping off place for years to come, morning, noon and night. you ever go home? >> i do. i live right around the corner. i can come here for breakfast. i don't like to cook. >> reporter: tom sherwood, news 4, washington. >> tune in to tune in. he's a larger than life figure from a d.c. neighborhood. he's now the focus of a major movie. still ahead, what some may not know about the life and legacy of j. edgar hoover. why an
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metro workers took a rather unusual step, shutting down an escalator at a busy station that wasn't broken. they did it to find one woman's lost treasure. shomari stone has more. >> i was devastated. >> reporter: she was disappointed when she glanced down. something missing from her hand. >> my finger is rubbing and waiting. >> reporter: the diamond and sapphire ring that looks like this, valued at $12,000 is under the escalator. she dropped it this past weekend. >> i took off my left glove, like this. i didn't hear anything, my mom turned around, said you dropped something. i heard ping, ping.
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we both got close like this, seeing what it was. we saw the last piece of white gold as it went down there. >> reporter: she's worn the ring for 15 years. it was passed down in her family since the early 1900s. >> i sat on the bench hysterically crying. i wanted them to do something about it. >> as you can see, crews are searching. they haven't found your ring. what are you going to do now? >> they haven't found it, yet. true. i'll accept that maybe, you know, it's gone after the search is complete. >> reporter: tough pill to swallow. >> yes, it is. >> i would still be crying. that was shomari stone reporting. at last check, the ring still hasn't been found. closets in the nation's
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capital are bursting at the seams. washington d.c. is the most shopaholic city in the u.s. they spend an average of $263 per month on clothes, shoes and other apparel according to arlington is second with $255 a month in wearable goods. the national average is $142 per month. tennessee, arizona and dallas, texas round out the top five cities. oh, boy. they have a big talent and bigger dreams. still ahead on "news4 this week," giving it all for a shot at $1 million. up next, why a totem pole from the pacific northwest made up next, why a totem pole from the paci[ man ]thwest made i got this citi thank you card
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we have hollywood here. that's right, d.c. was the scene for an invitation only premier of a new movie called "j.
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edgar." it's about j., edgar hoover. hoover actually grew up here in washington. here is chris gordon with a look at the man behind the headlines. >> reporter: he thought of himself as the fbi director for life, capturing public enemy number one, bank robber dillinger. he kept the death mask in the office. this exhibit is on display at the museum. it was part of the most popular tour until the terror attacks of 9/11. now the museum features a larger than life lawman whose real height may -- >> i'm 5'4". a small man with a large legacy. he was the person who took a
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small federal agency and made it what it is today. >> reporter: hoover was nationally known. what many may not realize is he was born and raised near the capital in the eastern market neighborhood. he lived here on 30th place in upper northwest. he was a creature of habit. he ate lunch at the hotel for 22 years. he was buried at the hoover family plot in southwest washington. an fbi special agent designed and built the iron fence around the grave sight. >> we'll see young men and woman with coils in their ears. they are on their way to see the director. they are new recruitrecruits, n directors. >> reporter: at the museum, chris gordon, news 4.
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a totem pole on display in bethesda was once a fallen tree in the pacific northwest. it's one of many of the new exhibits that celebrate native american medicine. wendy rieger takes a look. >> reporter: his name is jewel praying wolf james. he's putting final touches on a totem pole he brought to this garden at nih. inside the library, there's a new exhibit called native voices. native people's concept of health and illness. it looks at how they have using their herbal medicines and rituals to heal their physical and spiritual wounds. >> it's good for us. maybe it's not scientifically proven, but it's helped us get through. >> i think america's native population has a lot to teach
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us. we became interested in visiting outreach. >> reporter: he wants this exhibit to show the communal nature of the healing art and how they have kept the spirit of the earth and the ancestors near to help with their modern turmoil. the totem pole is the most powerful reminder. they found it in the nation where he resides. only fallen trees are taken and must first be blessed by the tribe. >> our teacher uses that all things were created first by the great spirit. we are the youngest children of creation and we have to give thanks to everything when we take advantage of the gift. this this case, the cedar tree. >> reporter: the totem represents healing.
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it starts with a woman and a basket. the tree of life rises from her. it has four roots, each representing the red, white, yellow and brown people of the earth. on top is a woman near the moon. >> a medicine woman that could heal anything. >> reporter: the totem pole and the exhibit will be at the national library of medicine at nih for the next two years. the public is encouraged to come and experience medicine at its roots. wendy rieger, news 4, bethesda. >> they received, not one not two, but nine tribal blessings as it made its way across the country to nih. he returned to our country with big adjustments to make. what
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verizon 4g lte. america's fastest and most reliable 4g network in over 160 cities. verizon. built so you can rule the air. old postoffice pavilion in
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downtown washington could soon contain hundreds of beds for tourists. hilton's joined the list of people wants to turn it into a hotel. it would feature four restaurants and some high end shops. the old post office is on pennsylvania avenue between the white house and capital. half a dozen companies including donald trump hotels have shown interest in redeveloping the property. stay tuned. many men and women who returned from iraq and afghanistan want to find a sense of normalcy. we met an inspiring young man who lost both legs and an arm and is working out. we asked him, what's your work out? >> when i stepped on the ied, i heard the explosion. i felt myself up in the air.
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my left ear, i heard the sound. i wanted to give up and die when i felt the pain. i didn't want to go through no more pain. when i was in the hospital, i had an idea that i lost my legs. i didn't know i lost my hands. when i knew i lost my legs and hand, i felt my life was over. i never thought i was going to be able to do the things i used to do before. i think from that day on a new carlos was born. i can't give up now, you know. i have to keep moving forward. it's what brought me here. >> one, two, three, four. that's what i'm talking about. >> i'm a marine, so marines stay healthy. i'm always looking for a challenge. i wanted to come to the gym to be myself, you know, to be -- to stay healthy and be an example for my kids.
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>> all for one, one for all, right? the game plan was be creative. we do arm forward to get the shoulders moving. we have mid cable rows. alternating rows to open up the spine so he's not so rigid. he enjoys boxing. the thought of hey, how do we incorporate that? >> i lost a lot of muscle mass. that's why we have been working a lot, you know, with the core and waking up those muscles that i wasn't using before. it's been helping me be more stable and using my prosthetics. >> live strong, army strong and now carlos strong. the way he brings it shows i have more inside of me than what my body shows right now. >> it's harder, but in the end, i'm enjoying it more. you know? the harder you work, you know,
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the bigger the reward. >> physically strong but mentally strong, whew. his trainer troy made a huge impact in his life. he's become a close friend to carlos and his family. it was a chance to see dreams fulfilled at the washington convention center. crazy people of all ages came out for "america's got talent" auditions. everything was welcome from singing to dancing and everything in between. they go on to perform live. the grand prize is $1 million. that's all for "news4 this week." i'm veronica johnson. thanks for joining us. i'm veronica johnson. thanks for joining us. hope you have a great week.
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